Cotutelles de thèse and PhD partnerships

A cotutelle de thèse project or a PhD partnership is conducted on the basis of a formal agreement between a Swiss and a foreign higher education institution and comprises the following:

  • a doctoral thesis completed under the direction of two supervisors
  • a joint thesis defence or similar, in which both participating higher education institutions are involved
  • issue of a joint doctoral degree certificate or two certificates stating that doctoral study was completed either in the scope of a cotutelle de thèse or a PhD partnership

Each year, the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI) awards funding to “cotutelle de thèse” projects or PhD partnerships that have been defined in a cooperation agreement between a Swiss higher education institution and a partner institution abroad (Europe and Israel). The allowance of up to CHF 10,000.00 serves in particular to cover travel and living expenses of the PhD student and the PhD supervisor from the Swiss higher education institution. swissuniversities is responsible for administrating the programme.
Doctoral students are eligible to participate if they:

  • are matriculated or employed at a Swiss higher education institution
  • are Swiss citizens or holders of a B, C or G residence permit
  • have studied at least one year at the bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral level in Switzerland by the application deadline of 31 March of the year for which the call was issued
  • are under the age of 40 when submitting the application (date effective is 31 March of the year for which the call was issued), or can provide a well-founded justification for exceeding the age limit.


Submitting the application


Contacts at the participating higher education institutions

Legal basis


Tristan Flury
Programme manager
T +41 31 335 07 66

Catherine Vésy
Programme administration
T +41 31 335 07 67


Call 2019
The callg 2019 is closed. Candidates will receive the expert commissions' decision by the end of June 2019.
The deadline for the next call is 31 March 2020.

Flyers for doctoral students

German  French

English  Italian

Reports on earlier calls

available in German
2018, 2017
2016, 2015, 2014

and in French
2018, 2017
2016, 2015, 2014